There are numerous calls by the Left to defund or to dramatically scale back law enforcement agencies, and now one far-left conclave is getting closer to its goal: Empty all the jail cells, too.
In King County, Washington, home to Seattle, local officials have long planned to stop incarcerating youths and even adults, and that plan is now gaining momentum in a county of 2.2 million people.
“Phasing out centralized youth detention is no longer a goal in the far distance,” Dow Constantine, King County executive, announced July 21, according to a story published in The Seattle Times.
“We have made extraordinary progress,” Constantine continued, “and we have evolved to believe that even more can be done.”
The news story explained King County has vowed to reach “Zero Youth Detention” for years, but it appears the murder of George Floyd, and the ongoing street protests that broke out, have energized the liberal community to take action.
Researcher: Whites deny they are racist because they are racist
Citing a controversial belief about race and hate, a researcher has concluded white Christians are racist because they disagree with claims they are racist.
The Public Religion Research Institute examines religion, culture, and public policy, and CEO Robert Jones has concluded racism is in the DNA of white Christians living today.
How does he know? Because some white Christians deny the existence of “systemic” racism, a term that means everything from criminal justice to housing is designed by white people to discriminate against minorities, and only racists deny that is true.
Dr. Alex McFarland asks, however, how the researcher can proclaim such truths in a “sweeping generalization” of white Christians.
“It might make for arresting headlines on a website,” McFarland observes, “but it's not at all reflective of truth.”
Jones suggests that Christians must get rid of their Christian worldview to get rid of their own racism but McFarland says that worldview has changed the world for good for thousands of years.
“Civil rights was birthed in the Church,” McFarland responds. “The abolitionist movement of the 19th century was birthed in the church."
Constantine, in fact, referred to Floyd’s death as a “vicious, state-sponsored murder” and stated that “Redemption begins by shifting public dollars away from systems that are rooted in oppression and into those that maintain public health and safety, and help people on a path to success.”
Meanwhile, Christopher Rufo, a Seattle-based writer and researcher, claimed last week via Twitter that he obtained a leaked email (which can be viewed here) from Constantine’s office that outlines plans to shut down both adult and youth detention centers in King County.
The email describes a "new vision" for the county's adult and young detention facilities located in Seattle, and that vision is a "phased closing of the Seattle jail," which is described as an "obsolete" design that is expensive to operate and no longer serves the county's "security, healthcare, or efficiency needs."
A following paragraph states King County will support alternate programs for adults, such as diversion and harm reduction, so the county can "decrease our reliance on secure detention."
The allegedly leaked email mirrors the Seattle Times story that shared the same date but the Times story did not mention adult jail facilities in the county.
A week later, on July 27, Rufo reported he had received new county documents that explain the “why” behind King County’s no-more-jails effort: White people are racist and they use jails to maintain control.
Rufo posted numerous anti-white documents online and alleged they came from a source in Constantine’s office who was forced to sit through a race-based, anti-white presentation. That person said county employees were advised the county’s court system is a “white supremacist organization” that deserves to be shut down.
The population of King County is 66 percent white and 7 percent black, U.S. Census figures show.
Elsewhere in the documents, it was claimed that government is “responsible for the problem of crime” while the criminals are the real “right’s holders” who deserve to be “honored and celebrated.”
Gary Bauer of American Values says it is shocking to see a plan to empty the jails based on claims of racism.
“There is a collective insanity that is gripping many U.S. cities,” he warns, “who are under the control of or being led by far-left politicians, and Seattle, Washington is one of the examples.”
Bauer likened the documents to a dystopian novel because they describe a reality that, in real life, does not exist.
The Seattle Times story did not mention the race-based documents, which allegedly leaked from the county office, but the story did state a Black Lives Matter chapter has met with Constantine's office to discuss a "path forward."